Last night I bought a 4 pound jar of peanut butter. Not odd really considering I have 6 kids. I don't think it's the healthiest thing on the planet, and I prefer all-natural for myself but, the kids love the stuff and it goes way beyond PB& J and PB Cookies in usefulness. Of course, we don't have any peanut allergies here so we're lucky in that respect.
I'll bore you with a standard PB cookie recipe down the line here but, for now, let's look at some different things about the all-American favorite goo.
Nutritionally speaking, peanut butter isn't so bad. Look at the stats:
2 Tablespoons of PB give you 13% of your daily requirement of protein, 8% of your needed fiber, 22% of vitamin E, 24% of niacin (way important for neurological health!), 7.5% of folate (pg women, this is VERY necessary to keep neural tube defects like spina bifida at bay!), plus a host of other nutrients~all in a tiny package. Good deal, I think.
There's peanut butter history here~please give it a read, it's quite interesting. It isn't all George Washington Carver either!
History and nutrition aside, my favorite part of any food are the recipes.
This first one is odd, yes, please don't balk though. I must admit, my initial reaction was just flat out "Ew!" and then I tried it, not as the recipe states but, I had a bowl of steaming tomato soup, I was pregnant so my taste horizons were limitless, and I dropped a spoonful of pb into the soup and was hooked. Campbell's is usually pretty on the mark even if they do make cream-of soups. Be adventurous.
This comes from "A Campbell Cookbook, Easy Ways to Delicious Meals" last revised in 1970.
Creamy Peanut Butter Soup
1 can (10 3/4 ounces) condensed tomato soup
1/4 cup peanut butter (chunky or smooth)
1 1/2 soup cans milk.
Stir soup into peanut butter, a little at a time, until well blended; add milk. Heat, but do not boil; stir occasionally. 3 to 4 servings.
In Africa peanuts are refered to as "groundnuts" and some of the best recipes I've seen come from that continent.
West African Chicken and Groundnut Stew
2 whole boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 tablespoon peanut oil or oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper
1 can whole tomatoes, (28-oz.) undrained, cut up
1 can Great Northern beans, (15.5-oz.) undrained
1 can corn, (11-oz.) drained
1 sweet potato, peeled, chopped
1/4 cup peanut butter
3/4 cup water
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1 teaspoon chili powder
3 cups hot cooked rice
Cut chicken breasts into 1/2-inch pieces. In 4-quart Dutch oven
over medium-high heat, cook chicken in oil until chicken is lightly
browned and no longer pink, stirring frequently. Add onion and
garlic; cook and stir 3 to 4 minutes or unti l onion is tender.
Add remaining ingredients except rice; mix well. Bring to a boil.
Reduce heat to medium-low; cover and cook 30 minutes or until sweet
potat o is tender, stirring occasionally. If stew becomes too thick
add additional water. Serve stew over hot rice.
When I owned a small cafe in Allentown (for about 2 minutes) an older patron asked if I could serve peanut butter soup. I didn't have a recipe then but I quickly came up with one and he was more than satisfied.
Peanut Butter Soup
1/2 cup diced onion
1/2 cup diced celery
1 clove garlic, minced
3 T Butter
1 T Flour
1 c Peanut butter
4 c Chicken stock or vegetable stock
1 c heavy cream
Cook onion, celery and garlic in butter until soft in 2-quart saucepan.
Add flour and cook, stirring, until smooth. Stir in peanut butter, add chicken
broth. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, over low
heat until thickened and smooth. Add cream and blend well.
1/2 cup chunky peanut butter
1/3 cup soy sauce
1-1/2 tablespoons sesame oil
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
3/4 pound boneless beef sirloin steak
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 large carrots, julienned
1/2 cup chopped green onions
1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
1/2 cup unsalted peanuts
3 cups cooked rice
Combine peanut butter, soy sauce, sesame oil, cilantro,
lemon juice, garlic powder, black pepper and red pepper
flakes in small bowl; set aside. Partially freeze steak;
slice across grain into 1/8 inch strips. Stir-fry beef in
oil in large skillet or wok over high heat 1 to 2 minutes.
Add carrots, onions, red pepper, and peanuts; cook 1 to 2
minutes. Add rice and peanut sauce; heat thoroughly. Serve warm.
Note: For Shrimp Bangkok, substitute 3/4 pound cooked and
de-veined shrimp for beef strips.
Baked Peanut Butter Chicken
1 chicken-2-3 lb-cut into pieces.
1/4 c flour
1/3 c peanut butter
1 t salt
1/8 t pepper
1/3 c milk
1/2 c bread crumbs,dry
1/4 c peanut oil
Wash and dry chicken pieces-dip in flour. Blend egg
with peanut butter, salt, and pepper. Gradually add
milk, beaten with fork to blend. Dip floured chicken in
peanut butter mixture and then in crumbs. Place on oiled
baking pan. Drizzle remaining oil over chicken pieces
and bake 375'F 45 minutes or until tender.
Cold Sesame Noodles
4 T peanut butter
3 t warm water
2 t sesame oil
1 dash soy sauce
1/2 t sugar
1 dash Tobasco-to taste
3 c cooked spaghetti noodles
Cook spaghetti-drain and rinse with cold water
Mix peanut butter with water until creamy and light in
color. Add remaining ing. Pour over spaghetti. Toss well
Cinda's Peanut Butter Cookies
1 c Peanut butter
1 c Sugar
Mix ingredients together-form into balls-flatten with
fork. Bake at 350 until edges are lightly browned.
Melt-in-Your-Mouth Peanut Butter Cookies
1/2 cup butter (don't use margarine - butter is best)
1/2 cup solid shortening (I use butter-flavored Crisco sticks)
1/2 cup peanut butter (I use creamy - but crunchy would be good too)
1-1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 beaten egg
2 cups sifted flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cream of tartar
Cream butter, shortening and peanut butter. Add sugar and beat until mixture
is fluffy. Blend in vanilla and egg until creamy. Combine remaining
ingredients and add to creamed mixture; blend well. Roll into 1-inch balls, roll the balls
in granulated sugar, and put them on a cookie sheet; then flatten with a fork.
Bake at 350° for 12 minutes.
Also check out:
National Peanut Board
Peanut Butter Lovers